Before we left we discussed the issue of reverse culture shock and the difficulties we will have as we transition back to life in America. One of the main things we talked about is that we will be angry. Our emotions and confusions will find an outlet through our anger. Sometimes at the weirdest and smallest things. For some people in the past it has been walmart or lawns. I am sitting in the airport in Washington D.C. and have already dealt with my share of culture shock and I haven’t even left the airport yet.
So I’m going to let you guys know what those things are that are making me angry. They might be a bit ridiculous and they aren’t necessarily ‘right’ in thinking, but it’s how I’m feeling.
Everything is huge. In the airport there was this gigantic wreath on the wall. I think my words were something like, “Why is that stupid wreath so freaking big?!” It just seemed so obnoxious. The airport is monstrous and I have had to walk all over this thing. Last, but not least, the people. This may sound really mean, probably because it is, but Americans are fat. I literally saw one overweight person in all of Africa. I can’t even count how many I have seen in this airport alone. It is disgusting and embarrassing once you have seen people literally starving to death. Like I said, this is a little cruel, but I’m just letting you know the thoughts that have been going through my mind.
A vending machine for electronics. Are you kidding me? Who on earth has the money to just buy an ipad from a vending machine. How exactly does that go? Like they are walking by and go, “Oh, I’ve been wanting one of those. Here let me put $500 dollars in this machine and I’ll get one right here.” Or is it more like, “My ipad broke on the plane, good thing they have this vending machine so I can buy a replacement immediately!” I mean, come on!
iphones. I am so annoyed by iphones. People act like it is their source of life. If you don’t have one you are like a lesser race. And there is this ridiculous software that all you have to do is talk and your phone will practically make you a sandwich, pick out your outfit and drive you to work. It’s obnoxious! Is it really that difficult to press the buttons? Reading a text message is just too much work, someone has to read it to you? That thing is not a cell phone. I wouldn’t even call it a computer. I don’t know what it is.
Since you guys have shared this experience with me I figured you should share in the difficult transition of returning home also. It’s not all sunshine and roses. In fact, there is hardly any sunshine.
I’ve been home about a week now and still struggling with the transition. There are some really great things about being home, but then there are some really hard things also. I’m taking it day by day. The best I can do is be incredibly thankful for how I have been blessed and try to see how I can take the changes that God did in my heart in Africa and bring them into my life in America and share them with others.
This is probably my last blog post seeing as how I’m home now and blogs just really aren’t my thing. I want to thank everyone who read this. It means a lot that you were interested in what I was doing and I am glad you got to share in my amazing semester with GoED. I hope you learned something or at least enjoyed reading these posts. Know that I appreciate your support. I’m sure you’ll be hearing from me again one day.
I’m not done with Africa yet.